The Long Walk Hurdle, run at Ascot since 1965, will take place this year on Saturday December 19th and will be known as the Marsh Hurdle Race.
Staged over three miles and half a furlong, the Long Walk is a key prep for the Stayers’ Hurdle at Cheltenham but is a Grade 1 event in its own right. Worth £100,000 this year, the Long Walk Hurdle 2021 should feature the very top staying hurdlers in the country, something we’ve become accustomed to as the race has been won by some of the best in the business.
Big Buck’s, Thistlecrack and Paisley Park are just a few of the runners to have taken this before going onto success at the Festival, so this is without doubt an important race for horsemen and punters alike.
A race like the Long Walk Hurdle doesn’t just have history behind it, but statistics too. This has become something of a small field race with just two renewals in the last decade having more than eight runners taking part. There are prevailing trends for the Long Walk Hurdle you should know before betting. While these do not guarantee you will find the winner when taking a punt, you are a lot more likely to make better decisions and an informed gambling choice by being aware of them. Here are key Long Walk Hurdle stats that every bettor should pay attention to:
Rest assured that, with this race being one of the most important on the National Hunt schedule, we should have plenty of Long Walk Hurdle offers being thrown at us by bookmakers nearer race time.
The usual Best Odds Guaranteed and Non-Runner No Bet deals will be in force when prices are published, but keep an eye out simply for the best value. Currently SkyBet are top-priced on more Stayers’ Hurdle candidates than anyone else, so presumably their Long Walk Hurdle betting market will be strong. Paddy Power Cheltenham offer deserves your attention too.
William Hill also seem to be fairly generous with runners in this division, something regular punters are more appreciative of than any one-off bonus deals offered up so that’s what we like to see.
The Long Walk Hurdle cut up badly because of desperately heavy going in 2019 with Paisley Park withdraw because of the ground. That left The Worlds End to beat what opposition lined up at Ascot, giving trainer Tom George and owners the McNeil Family an early Christmas present. Debra Hamer stable star Tobefair was also declared to run, but didn’t take him his engagement here. The race was sponsored by Marsh for the first time after they bought out the portfolio previously held by JLT. Backed into 15/8 favourite, The Worlds End made most of the running at a dark and gloomy Ascot. When he made a mistake at the second last flight, it looked as though his chance had gone.
However, The Worlds End rallied when switched after jumping the final hurdle and rallied gamely in the hands of Adrian Heskin. He got back up inside the last 75 yards to win going away from 3/1 Nicky Henderson runner L’Ami Serge by 2½ lengths. The runner-up hadn’t been seen on the track for 580 days and that lack of race fitness for the Simon Munir and Isaac Souede owned gelding told on the Ascot run-in. L’Ami Serge still held on for second under Nico de Boinville ahead of Oliver Sherwood’s mare Papagana, the 9/4 second-favourite. Nick Williams mudlark Agrapart didn’t fire despite having his ground, but the 11/2 outsider was only beaten five lengths in fourth for Davy Russell.